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Bjorn
My Toshiba R200 laptop had a lot of minor problems.

-would drop second monitor if the keyboard had any pressure applied to it what-so-ever
-one of the USB ports lost that little bit of plastic that keeps the cable in place
-the monitor would go all red and pixilated if you tilted it all the way back
-the volume control knob stopped working.

When I bought the computer from futureshop (canadian best buy) I negotiated a free product service plan...so fixing all of this was carried out gratis.

I went to pick it up today after being in the shop for a wicked quick 7 days and brought her home. She worked great until I tried to install updates, at which point she froze and had to be restarted. Upon restart it went to BSoD every time.

I figured, I have the vista recovery disks, I'll just reinstall the OS. Nope, that stops half way through too.

So I thought, 'maybe these guys fucked up my recovery disks' and tried installing Windows 7. That got a but further, then crapped out too.

I'm at a loss...currently I'm wiping and re-writing the HDD in a desperate attempt to get this shit to work.

The most frustrating thing thought is that I was given a Compaq laptop as a loaner while mine was in the shop. It was so nice compared to my Toshiba. I had a compaq before and loved it, but I trusted consumer reports when I bought my Toshiba, and it has been an annoying POS. I was hoping that the repair bills would be so high that futureshop would just give me a new computer (which is part of the product service plan), but to my surprise they fixed it instead.

To add insult to injury they slapped 'warranty void if removed' stickers on all the screw holes while it was in the shop, so now I can't even open up the back, remove the HDD and format it in an external drive enclosure.

Sorry for the novel, I'm just really frustrated.
Phix
Ok, I'm genuinely sorry to hear about this, leif.

I used to work at Best Buy (until this January) in the computers department no less... so I know first hand how fucking shitty the Service Plan is offered by Best Buy/FutureShop. It's where they make the most amount of money by offering you the shittiest service available. And the service in store varies depending on how knowledgable/leniet the people in computers actually are and in particular the GeekSquad/In-store technicians.

Never get the PSP. Doesn't even matter if they offer to inboard that shit with the price of your laptop so you end up getting "free" PSP. You're better off guessing your way through your laptop than having them fiddle with it themselves or worse: sending it out to their repair depot which in reality is the company that offered to do the repairs for FutureShop/Best Buy for the lowest price thus maximzing their profits. If I remember the name the company up here that does the repairs is called Nexicore. At least, in Ontario it is. Dunno if it's national or just provincial based.

But, yeah, you can try taking it to another FutureShop and bitch about the other FutureShop you were at (since a PSP is not linked to any one store) or taking it back to the original FutureShop and arguing with the manager for an hour or two at which point he'll either a) offer you a new laptop with some stupid $50 to $100 discount if you're REALLY lucky, cool.gif offers to send it back out again which is 50/50 on if they can even do anything on it or fuck it up even more...

But the PSP does have that Guaranteed Replacement (at least Best Buy does and to my knowledge the PSP offered by FutureShop is 1:1 with Best Buy's) where if a product need sto be sent out for more than 3 or 4 repairs (forgot the exact number) then on the 4th/5th repair they'll replace your laptop outright and put the cost of the laptop towards the new purchase.
Bjorn
^I too was a future shop Product Expert while in University...I'm sure we could tell each other some hilarious stories.

I'm pretty convinced that the new HDD they put in is fucked. I would try to verify this my self, but there are all of the wonderful 'warranty void' stickers slapped on it.

It might have been the same company which you were talking about, as it was sent to SW Ontario.

I think I'm just going to press them to fix it and make it right, maybe I'll talk to a manager...he is a former co-worker of mine though, which means I don't want to be an asshole.
Bjorn
UPDATE:

It was nexicore who did the 'repair' and it is now getting sent back to them. I'll keep doing this till they replace the mother-fucker...two repairs down, to to go before the mo-fo gets replaced.
skr
Did you write down what the BSoD said?
Bjorn
^No, I didn't think that I needed to. I guess it was dumb of me to assume all BSoDs are the same.

I'm really hoping that the repairs are too $$ to bother with, since I'm digging this Compaq. So much better than my Toshiba.
Bjorn
Came back yesterday...still fucked...this is getting annoying.
BlackJack
Get a new laptop or build your own awesome computer.
Bjorn
It's back getting repaired again.

One more serious repair and I get a good credit toward a macbook.

Boo ya.
Phix
jesus christ just burn the damn thing

that'll do more good than what those morons at nexicore can do
Bjorn
^I'm banking on their ineptitude. I have 0 faith in their abilities to actually fix my computer now...they are obviously retarded. Their only solution thus far has been 'replace mother board...replace HDD...restore to factory settings," which they have done twice. Either the mobo isn't the problem, or they keep using substandard parts which don't work.

One more breakdown and it's goodbye bill gates hello steve jobs...at least for my work computer that is.

If you have any suggestions for dealing with BestBuy/Futureshop for that inevitable fourth repair I would love to hear it. I have heard that getting futureshop to admit that you are entitled to a replacement under the lemon rule can be difficult...but after three motherboard replacements will they have a leg to stand on?
Phix
As long as you have all the paperwork showing that it was sent out which I believe constitutes as a major repair then you're good to go. That's the evidence you'd be using.

Of course, I'm speaking from Best Buy/Geek Squad perspective and experience so I'm not sure if the FutureShop In-Store Techs function the same way GeekSquad did. I'm guessing they do at least on an adminstrative level.
Altostratus
i find if i use my PC for nothing but evil it works better.
Bjorn
OK, this would be funny if it weren't happening to me.

I got my computer back for the third time.

First thing I notice, the 'A' key doesn't work any more. All the other keys are fine, but the 'A' key is dun busted.

Big deal, nobody is going to scrap a computer because an 'A' key is dead...maybe a new keyboard, but not a new computer.

So I install all the updates like a good Windows Genuine Advantage guy, and get this screen.


It doesn't go away...I wait like five minutes. So I hold down the power button and manually restart. And I get this screen.


If I choose to 'launch startup repair command' (the first option) I get this screen.


If I choose the second option it takes me right back to the black screen.

Aw fuck....does this mean I get my fourth repair and therefor new macbook?

I could reinstall the OS, but why the fuck should I. I'll let Future Shop waste their time doing that . . . I've already wasted enough of my time with this POS.
Flaw
0xA has almost always been RAM in my case, one time my PSU.

/edit: That fuckall character in the first screen is something I've yet to come across, it looks like they seriously fucked up your laptop.
Phix
I'm going to assume Nexicore replaced your motherboard this time?
Bjorn
The repair sheet says 'Nexicore repaired, 'replaced motherboard, restored laptop to the factory settings' Tested OK" I now have three repair sheets that say that.

This morning it got beyond the "launch setup repair" screen and ran some sort of diagnostic.

Now it will start up. Fuck I hope this isn't fixed...

Just out of curiosity, if this happened once, then it is probably going to happen again...right? Is there some way I could stress out the computer to help it happen sooner than later? I don't want to sabotage it, just try to find a way to reliably make the BSoD pop up for when I bring the computer back to Future Shop.

EDIT: OK, its been acting a little strange. It's been installing updates OK, but during on it froze, had to be restarted, at which time I was informed that windows had recovered from a serious error.

I also noticed that if I bang the table that the computer is on or move the screen back and forth green and purple pixels all over the screen.

EDIT: now it stopped doing the pixel thing...so fucking annoying.

Now it's freezing again...with the pixels.
moe
Take the fucker back already. Show them the pictures as proof of wtf is going on.
skr
Looks like they did a poor job putting things back together, hence the pixelation.

If you're getting freeze ups STILL, and still get BSOD after a motherboard replacement, it could be bad RAM. If/when you see a BSOD error, write down the error codes you're getting. a Google search on those error codes usually will tell you the problem.

It could also be something as simple as an incompatible driver, an incorrect bios setting, or a component attached to the machine that's causing instability.

Just the other day, my dad's computer kept freezing up every 20 seconds or so for no reason. It turns out to be a faulty wireless PCI card installed in the machine that's causing the behavior. My point is that these warranty places have to deal with so many faulty machines in queue that they only use the normal list of troubleshooting tactics rather than spend time with the machine, get to know it first, then dissect the problem, thus resulting in piss poor service and more opportunity to have the customer bring a machine(that isn't covered by warranty) back again to pay for more useless service.
Bjorn
I'm hoping its because of something on the mobo...I know they went with these guys cuz they are cheap, but if these guys can't fix anything I fail to see how this is to Future Shop's advantage...they must be giving away free PCs left and right.

Needless to say I will NOT be getting extended warranty on anything from Future Shop ever again...I might get a gift card for $400, but holy fuck, that's almost the same as them refunding the warranty considering it was $300.
Phix
If you want any extended warranty in the future always buy it direct from the manufacturer.
skr
Here's a decent article on that stop error you posted earlier(which I apologize, I failed to notice..)

http://www.tweaksforgeeks.com/IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL.html
Bjorn
Thanks skr, there is hope!

Frankly I haven't had time to do anything with the computer recently...I have had a bunch of out-of-town stuff to take care of, and have been trying to get my writers stuff to copy early so I can spend the weekends doing the out-of-town things. Last I checked it was running OK...not great, but OK.

Maybe I'll let it run like crazy tomorrow, see what happens.
Cyclone
Leif, I hate to shit on your laptop but the last thing I'd ever buy these days is a Toshiba. Many years ago, they were known for high quality laptops but the last 5 years of models have all been dogshit imo. Cheaply made, overpriced, poor reliability, I could go on and on. I'd buy an Acer before I picked up a Toshiba.

I dunno if it's an option but I'd back up all the data and try exchanging the laptop for something else. If a car shit on you this many times since you bought it only a few months ago, would you keep it?
Phix
Just don't buy bargain bin Acers. Like, avoid the $399-$499 bracket like the PLAGUE.
Bjorn
I've had the Toshiba since Nov 2007, and it's been OK...

I bought it because consumer reports recommended it...dumb move...

As soon and I have time I'll deal with it, but right now my life is all deadlines and out-of-town weddings...this was my first weekend in the city since sometime in July.
moe
I'm actually beginning to feel your pain. I got a free HP courtesy of my dad's company (or he did, and I took it), and within four months of having it the HD died. The particular computer was covered by a Saudi Arabia-only warranty, and I had to wait a month to take it back, and give it back. They replaced the HD telling me, "Don't turn it off without shutting down." Thanks guys. About two months later (ie yesterday morning), and came back to Dubai, the damn thing died again. Since it's a free laptop I'm tempted to just give it back and buy my own. Funds are limited though because I'm planning a trip to Oman with my girlfriend...so unless I get an early birthday present from my parents, I'm shit out of luck.
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